What Haiku Can Teach Us About Eyeliner

The short night

on the hairy caterpillar

beads of dew. – Yosa Buson

If you’ve had a short night (passing out on the couch after work) or long night (gallivanting around town), make sure that you wash and DRY your face properly before shellacking another coat of eyeliner. Those of you who are using an eyeliner at your waterline (inner eye rim), make one clean pass. Don’t go back and forth like it’s a coloring book. You can also use Buxom Insider Eyeliner, which is specially formulated (contains antioxidants and vitamins) and has a velvety tip to prevent eye irritation.

Just simply alive,
Both of us, I
And the poppy. – Kobayashi Issa

I had my doubts about MAC’s Eye Kohl Hot Poppy until I tried it. Its red tint gave some depth to my hazel eyes. Blue eyes look really remarkable with red eyeliner. While I know it’s dramatic, you can line the top with any red eyeliner for a very chic look. Notice, I suggested using it on the top. If you go nuts with red eyeliner on the bottom of your eye, you’re going to look like the queen of the zombie ball.

Thus spring begins: old
stupidities repeated,
new errs invented – Kobayashi Issa

Every spring-cleaning, I make the mistake of throwing out my trusty eyeliners and starting fresh with trendier ones. Every spring, I realize I’ve burnt bridges and go back to buying my favorite brands. If you get the bug to clean out your makeup, make sure you save the old eyeliners before you’ve fallen in love with a new brand. You may even need a couple of days of practice with the new eyeliner to completely switch over. Don’t rush yourself. A bare-chested snail doesn’t hurry over a lotus leaf (Haiku reference).

All my friends
viewing the moon –
an ugly bunch – Matsu Basho

This is actually a pretty mean haiku, and I was surprised those exist. However, use a good all day eyeliner or you could wind up a member of the ugly bunch. I suggest Stila Waterproof Eyeliner. It is simply impenetrable. This eyeliner creates a dark barrier around the eye that keeps it smudge proof all day long. In fact, you’ll have to cry over a lost love while zooming across the Bay in a rocket boat before you’ll do any damage to your makeup. Haiku has a lot to teach us about makeup and life. If you are able to apply your eyeliner with the same type of focus as a caterpillar climbing a dewy leaf under a full moon than you’ve got a chance for fabulous eyes.

Vote for me for Allure’s Beauty Blogger of the Year Challenge at this link!

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Slinging Some Beauty Advice for Allure

Allure Magazine has decided to hitch their tiny publication’s wagon to my big time star (just joking). Today, they announced my involvement in their Beauty Blogger of the Year Challenge. Yay! I’m really excited, because Allure is a standup magazine. They were one of the first publications to report the heath risks of breast implants and expose drug abuse in the modeling industry. Allure is also one of the few magazines that you can put down and not vow to lose ten pounds.

I Will Wrestle a Tiger for the Challenge

Ok, so that’s not true. In the next five weeks, I’ll be involved in some challenges that compromise my ability to look presentable to my adoring fans (I’m talking about my cats). Each week a new challenge will be featured on the Allure website: http://blogger-awards.allure.com/contestant/faith-mcgee/  The blogger with the least amount of votes gets kicked off the beauty island and has all their makeup brushes stripped from them.

Come and Get It

While I can’t give you any details about the challenges, I can tell you to buckle your seatbelts for Michael Jackson impersonators, beauty tips from a fabulous drag queen and some non-celebrity performances! Feel free to tell everyone you’ve ever met about it and to vote for me. Actually, vote for the best beauty blogger in the challenge. I’d love to go to New York and win the title of “Best Beauty Blogger,” but the best blogger should be the one who wins and not the one with the most “fans.” Check out my blog frequently, because I will be serving piping hot beauty advice.

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Dolly Parton is the MacGuyver of the Beauty World

“It costs a lot of money to look this cheap.” – Dolly Parton

Other than being the best country singer and songwriter in the biz, Dolly Parton is a total MacGuyver when it comes to incorporating poisonous everyday items into her beauty routine as documented in her memoir, Dream More. Her ability to improvise while stuck in the sticks with a matchbook, some berries and honeysuckle is inspiration/dangerous.

Matchstick Eyeliner

In one episode, MacGuyver uses a machine gun with a cord, a stick and some matches to fire a firearm remotely. Dolly Parton, on the other hand, creates a sexy smoky eyes look with the help of a match. The basic premise of this trick involves lighting the match and dunking it in water. When it dries, you can use the end to spread phosphorus and wood splinters underneath you eye. How does it compare with Laura Mercer’s Caviar Eye Liner and Eye Liner Brush? Not so great. If you don’t mind using a multivalent nonmetal chemical element of the nitrogen group right next to your eyeball it works great!

Red Pokeberries Lipstick

Indigenous Americans used red pokeberries to treat itching, certain types of cancers, rheumatism and syphilis. Dolly Parton used red pokeberry juice as a lipstick when growing up in Tennessee. Up front, I’ll mention that these berries are poisonous to mammals if they are not cooked properly.  Generally, the berries are boiled down and used for pies or to poison husbands (just kidding). I want to reiterate that this plant can kill you, so leave the danger to Dolly Parton.

Honeysuckle Perfume

Forget about buying an expensive bottle of honeysuckle perfume if you have the plant in the backyard or your neighbor’s backyard. Making the perfume is pretty easy. Simply, snip off a couple of stems with your fingernail scissors and place them in a bowl full of water. Let the bowl sit overnight and then boil down so you have roughly 1 tsp. left. Add 3 drops of glycerine to the mixture and store in your refrigerator next to your Champaign and condiment collection. The perfume lasts three months.

By following Dolly Parton’s tips, it will cost you almost nothing to look cheap. Use these beauty tricks at your own risk. Some beauty secrets should remain secret.

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A Shout Out

Going to Oakland’s Stript Wax Bar is like a night out at a regular bar that has cauldrons of wax, exam tables and strange lighting. Ok, it’s not like going to a bar at all. However, they do have some kick ass waxing experts that make the trip less harrowing than other salons. Before I go into how awesome they are, I’d like to reveal my own personal horror stories.

The Night of the Living Dead

My former esthetician was a waxing ninja—wax on wax off. Between cracking jokes and ripping waxing strips at a lightening speed, I barely had time to scream in agony before she was done. The honeymoon ended when I came to see her on a day that she looked deathly pale. Ten minutes into my Brazilian waxing appointment, she excused herself to dry heave into a garbage can in the hallway. If I hadn’t known that she was sick, I would have taken offense. I frantically pondered how I was going to remove the wax and myself from the situation.

The waxing room was somewhere in the dark depths of the salon’s matrix. Could I find my way out? My cell phone rang. I know enough about horror movies to know that you should never stop to answer your phone. I saw the doorknob rattle and braced myself. She staggered into the room with eyes glazed and mouth open.

As soon as she tried to assure me that she was feeling better, she sang a rainbow into the trashcan. I took that as my chance to make a break for it. I learned a major life lesson that day that I wished that I had just learned from a horror movie: avoid people with pale complexions who sway and moan.

Horror Show

Like the opening to many horror stories, I bought a Groupon one day. My Groupon was for the waxing services from a particularly shady place in San Francisco that was a stone’s throw from my house.  From my bedroom window, I witnessed their raucous parties. Raucous may be a fairly subjective description, but in my book it includes guys with shaved heads wearing tutus and chucking popcorn at passing cars.

Though my gut told me no, my wallet told my gut to shut up, and I booked appointment for a bikini wax. Everything about the experience was normal until it was time for me to get dressed. Like a disastrous candle-making project, wax covered my legs and nether regions (Quick question. Is everything called the nether regions in the Netherlands?). When I asked my esthetician if it was normal that half the wax pot was left on my body, she assured me that it would simply “fall off.” I can assure you that the wax did not “fall off” as I was trudging up the San Francisco hills wearing tight jeans.

Tales from the Stript

The Stript Wax Bar doesn’t play around. You won’t walk out with wax stuck to your leg or the stomach flu. While their wax services are not completely painless, they provide you with numbing spray and Champaign. Nothing about the experience there is nightmarish and with a couple glasses of the bubbly, you’ll find yourself almost looking forward to getting waxed. Their waxistas are remarkably professional, unzombie like and a total delight to work with.

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Diorshow (Me the Money) Mascara

The Diorshow has a cult following.  You may have seen some of its long-lashed followers out on the town or crying in public without mascara smudges. The ‘show has earned its cred by being one of the most used mascaras at fashion shows and photo shoots for over ten years. There are currently 13 different mascaras to choose from in the Diorshow line. The original is the most popular. Its XXL brush delivers a creamy, buildable formula (containing waxes and silicone polymers) that allows the common user to look like a movie star.  All this is good and dandy as long as you can afford the price. The Diorshow can run you $25. Not too bad unless you factor in its dark secret. The Diorshow will not last you very long. Good luck trying to achieve clump-free lashes after a month. Those of you who frantically pump the wand up and down will have a dry wand in no time, because air gets into the tube.

If you want to use the ‘show year-round, it can cost you at least $300. Are dramatic runway eyelashes worth it? Only science can answer that question. “A longer lash creates more action in the eye area: The extended tip travels a larger arc during each blink. Since the human visual system prioritizes movement, fluttering those long lashes can catch, and keep, eye contact,” according to Robin Nixon’s article Beauty Beat: Eye-Catcher from Psychology Today. Ok, so long lashes can help you attract a mate. When you look at the fact that dating websites like Match.com charge about $35 dollars a month, Diorshow is saving you money. Having a date Saturday night or someone to help you move is a pretty fabulous benefit coming from mascara. To sum it up, it might be time to drink the Kool-Aid.

Hiding the Evidence

Bathrooms quickly turn into interrogation rooms after a night out. Under the bright lights, your bathroom knows only the bad cop routine. Where were you last night? Did you chase a white wine margarita with some overly expensive Mexican beer? Did you eat the toppings off your nachos only to finally eat the tortilla chips when you forgot about your no carb diet? Were you kissing someone with a beard? The answer is yes to everything. Why lie? Your face is the only piece of evidence your bathroom needs to convict you. That huge pimple will send you to the esthetician’s chair if you let it get out of control.

Pimples cannot be reasoned with in any capacity. They are reminders that life without pimples is very short. Burt’s Bees Natural Acne Solution  is your knight in shining armor (don’t wait for a man to save you from yourself).

This spot treatment consists of parsley extracts, tea tree oil, calendula and yarrow. Proven to reduce the blemishes in 48 hours, you can treat weekend backlash before slinking into your office chair on Monday. When applying this spot treatment, do not pour half of the bottle on your face. You will not like how it feels and it will dry out your skin. Apply just a small amount to each blemish. Wait a few minutes before applying the big guns (your foundation) to allow the treatment to sink into the skin and kill the bad bacteria. Slip back on the promise ring you wear to remind yourself to wait out for that perfect carb. Don’t  fall for just any crappy nachos.

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Live Like A Dude

It’s almost unimaginable that you might want to steal your boyfriend’s cosmetic products. However, next to the Irish Spring 4 oz-pack of 20 soaps lies his best beauty secret. RAW COMPLEX VI Hydrating Serum is for men. There is no way of getting around that, but the antioxidants in the product don’t know what gender of skin they protect and heal.

This hydrating serum consists of a skin soothing sangria of seawater, plant derived nutrients and wine. Furthermore, those who tend to wake up with skin that looks like a used fast food napkin (oily) can slather on the serum without worrying about breakouts. The serum will also protect the skin’s cellular structure from free radicals. No, free radicals aren’t a protest group from Berkeley. Free radicals are a group of unbalanced atoms that damage cell membranes. Pollution creates free radicals. Cigarette smoke creates free radicals.  Living creates free radicals! The last statement just means that free radicals are part of the natural aging process. Vive la revolution! Fight free radicals.

It’s important to use the serum after cleansing, but before furiously applying foundation in order to look “naturally beautiful” when he wakes up. Take him up on his offer the next time he suggests sleeping at his place.

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It’s Vitamin C Time and I Don’t Mean a Mimosa

If your skin could order at a bar, it would get an orange juice and not the lemon drop martini you want to drink. According to an article by WebMD.com, vitamin C reverses skin damage caused by aging and sun exposure. Vitamin C helps speed up your skin’s repair system. It’s like taking care of a car. The more care you put in, the longer it will properly run. Guess what? That car is your skin and you want it to run for a long time.

While you could sit there watching The Bachelor and chugging orange juice, there is a more effective way to get vitamin C to your skin. iS CLINICAL makes a PRO-HEAL SERUM that is loaded with vitamins C, E and A. This serum is perfect for those inflicted with rosacea, acne, skin inflammation and dermatitis. Use a small amount of the serum and within 48 hours your skin regains whatever architecture it lost from inflammation. In addition, the serum protects the skin from whatever sun damage it might get when you are drinking your mimosa at brunch.

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Perricone MD Cleansing Bar=Makes Bad Things Go Away

Sun has been streaming through your windows for hours. Outside, people are standing in long lines to eat whatever is on the brunch menu. You’ve just woken up after turning you cell phone’s snooze off after the tenth time. You stagger over to the mirror in the bathroom. The reflection is not you own. It’s some poorly costumed hobo you might see from a community theatre production. Time to take action.

Cosmetics do more than just look bad in the morning. According to an Allure Magazine article, makeup holds on to pollution. As you dream about that guy from the bar, your cells break down from an assault by free radicals. The result is like pressing fast forward on the aging process. The best thing to do before heading out for a mimosa is to stop this cellular warfare.

Cleansing the skin removes dirt and makes everything feel like you didn’t take that Jager shot. Perricone MD Cleansing Bar cleanses and exfoliates pores without drying out your face. The last thing you need is to dehydrate your skin after a night out with the girls. This cleansing bar is ok to use for all skin types. Furthermore, it softens wrinkles over time. If for some weird reason, you don’t have any wrinkles then you can use the bar as a preventative measure. While Perricone MD Cleansing Bar is more expensive than a drugstore generic cleanser, your skin is worth it because you have to wear it everyday.

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